TEAM ANTONIA DIABETES (Otago Rail Trail with Omnipod)

Asides from pedalling my mother’s e-bike around and abusing its power to the maximum whilst fantasising about being on a motorcycle and channelling some “life is a highway” energy, I have not been cycling consistently. 

Not once did I find myself on a bicycle during my first year of university. Not only was everything within walking distance but a cycle in anything but summer sunshine wasn’t very appealing. What can I say? Malaysia has spoilt me! After all, I did dedicate a whole post to not being cold so I don’t think this comes as any surprise.

Back to cycling.  On the 24th of January 2022 I successfully completed the Otago Rail Trail.  A superb fairly flat trail from Cromwell to Middlemarch on the South Island of New Zealand.  For 4 days you roll along an old and visually spectacular disused railway through tunnels and over bridges.

In order to prepare for the 152km cycle that is the Rail Trail we first completed (with minimal café stops and photo taking) the 40km Lake Dunstan trail. Riding with a seat too low, no cycling gloves and sorely missing the experience of what it felt like to be full power on an e-bike, I figured that some things needed rectifying if I was to get serious the next 4 days. I had much to learn but thankfully being a Type 1 means that one is quite open to learning. Unless the learning phase is elicited from a heated debate with a certain brother about how he’s a “cycling expert” and maybe your seat is way too low… then maybe willingness to learn is reduced… slightly…

During the cycle I was all kitted out, I don’t mean in a lycra, but rather with my wonderful diabetes devices.  Team Antonia Diabetes!  A key member of the team being my  Omnipod (remember my last blog – if Gucci made an insulin pump…..).  It never left me unlike my fast-cycling parents!

It was straight forward to control my insulin levels throughout the journey. Insulin requirements were bound to change when you’re getting your sweat on and with the touch of a few buttons to instruct the device, it couldn’t have been any simpler than with the Omnipod. It made me feel confident that cycling a great distance at a great speed was eminently achievable. Prior to Omnipod it would have been regular stops to take injections.  Go (slow) Team Antonia Diabetes. 

My cycling team during the rail trail were my family members, all of whom I believe were aiming for the title of “family-of-six-to-have-completed-the-Central-Otago-Rail-Trail-in-the-fastest-time-ever-recorded.”

Cycling is a team sport and I’d like to thank my Omnipod (and the team at Insulet Australia) for helping me be the Queen of the Tour! 

Pre rail trail – Cromwell to Clyde

1st leg – Clyde to Ophir

2nd leg – Ophir to Naseby

3rd leg – Naseby to Kokonga *

4th leg – Kokonga to Middlemarch

*Antonia wore the yellow jersey having completed this leg (42.26km) the fastest in a time of 2 hours 7 minutes and 23 seconds.

Glucose upon publishing: 4.7 mmol/L

5 thoughts on “TEAM ANTONIA DIABETES (Otago Rail Trail with Omnipod)

  1. Well done Antonia. I think that cycling must be in our genes…. Tom is even faster than his dad now which is no mean achievement and is a keen member of the Harrogate club and also trains with the Brownley brothers….
    PS when I was about 20 I once cycled 200 miles in a day! It was flat but windy on the return. I never did it again! Keep up all your activities and enjoy your studies.
    Love Grandad

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